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Book Review for the Book Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete, a Book About His Son's Autism

Updated on February 26, 2022
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Nyesha loves writing about cooking/recipes, restaurants, movies, weddings, and poetry.

Book cover for Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete - Not My Boy! is a book about his son's Autism diagnosis

A book about his son's Autism diagnosis -Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete
A book about his son's Autism diagnosis -Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete

Book Review for Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete

Book Review for Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete (This is a book about his son's Autism diagnosis.)

This hub will contain a book review of the book, Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete. Rodney Peete is a retired NFL football player and husband of actress Holly Robinson Peete.

  • Together, Rodney Peete and Holly Robinson Peete share four children, the eldest of which are twins, a boy and a girl. Their names are RJ and Ryan. RJ was diagnosed with Autism at age three. Ryan has Attention Deficit Disorder.
  • At the time of the writing of this book review, this Hollywood couple also has a reality television show series on the Oprah Winfrey OWN network.
  • The name of the television show is For Peete's Sake. The television show focuses on following the family in their interactions in their daily lives at home and shining a light on the challenges that the oldest son, RJ faces with Autism but now, back to talking about the book, Not My Boy! by Rodney Peete.

This book, Not My Boy! written by RJ’s father, Rodney Peete discusses his own challenges in acceptance of his son’s condition and a description of his period of denial of his son’s condition, Autism. The book about RJ's Autism is very revealing and insightful. This book about discussing Autism comes as an acclaimed and recommended read for anyone that wants to learn more about what families experience when there is a child with Autism and for other parents that are going through the same thing especially for the Dads that often look to their sons as “mini-me”. We all know that expression that can be faulty for a child’s individuality and the parents’ expectations upon the child.

Rodney Peete discusses in detail many of the issues that he struggled with. Having been an NFL football player, clearly he had already spent a significant amount of time away from home over the years, but then came some additional avoidance of family home life by going to drink at bars and lounges when his young son was having his difficult behaviors at home.

Holly and Rodney’s son RJ (Rodney Junior) was diagnosed with Autism at age three. The family dealt with the stress of RJ having delayed speech, not speaking much until beyond the age of four, running away behavior even if there is traffic, limited or practically non-existent safety awareness, and other things that can be not just disconcerting but downright heartbreaking, frightening and enormously stressful. A few incidents that Rodney Peete describes in his book, Not My Boy! include Holly having to chase RJ outside in her flip flops while Rodney looked on from an upstairs window, feeling paralyzed and helpless in the situation as the toddler RJ got closer and closer to the busy road.

On another occasion as described in the book, RJ could not be found anywhere in Rodney and Holly’s house that they shared with their family. They went out looking for him thinking that he had wandered off which is very much a possibility among children with Autism.

Rodney Peete and Holly Robinson Peete went out looking for RJ, each parent in a separate car and when they got back to the house, they found that RJ was at home all along, on the exterior of the house, sitting on the roof!

Rodney Peete and Holly Robinson Peete were terrified and had to get RJ to safety as soon as possible before he incurred injury. Rodney got RJ to get back into the house through the window while Holly was in tears.

This book, Not My Boy! is offered in plain and simple language and is a quick and riveting read that offers true insight to the challenges that some parents of Autistic children face, the enormous stress of daily extra worry over their Autistic child’s safety, the strain on marriage, what the sibling(s) of the Autistic child goes through and more.

RJ’s twin sister Ryan was always very protective of him and eager to encourage people to drop the Autism label and just see RJ for the person that he is, so that he can gain more in friendship and acceptance.

Described in the book, Not My Boy!, on one occasion, Rodney Peete and Holly Robinson Peete went to the school to give a talk on how the children can better accept Autistic children like RJ.

  • Ryan helped to coach Rodney and Holly on what they should say in their presentation to the class!
  • Ryan had given her parents pertinent and invaluable advice such as to just say the word Autism once in the speech and try not to say it again. Let the other children see RJ for RJ and not so much for this medical condition of Autism that he has.


The book, Not My Boy! is very poignant

The book, Not My Boy! is very poignant in many ways. The book addresses numerous issues including:

  • Holly and Rodney's suspicion of vaccine injury in their son, a suspicion that occurs among many, many parents of children with Autism because the parents often notice a change in the behavior of the child shortly after the time that vaccines were administered.
  • In the book, RJ's stomach gut sensitivity to food products containing gluten as well as food products that contain the casein found in cow's milk. This too has been found to be a common combination of food sensitivities among Autistic children.

RJ is thriving

  • Years after the writing of Rodney Peete's book publication, Not My Boy!, RJ is a young adult who is thriving as can be seen in the before mentioned television show.
  • RJ has beat many odds and done many things that his doctors were not sure that he would be able to do one day including speaking extensively with a large vocabulary, having been able to get his driver's license and having been able to attain various forms of employment including modeling work.
  • Back in the book, Not My Boy!, Rodney Peete makes significant mention of how he needed to learn from the qualified professionals about how to better interact with RJ when he was a kid. As RJ's Dad, he thought that he could use his own methods for a breakthrough with his son but this was often only met with frustration and through the professionals, he needed to learn certain techniques in Floor Time play time exercises, for example.

Rodney Peete & Holly Robinson Peete discuss their books, "Not My Boy!" and "My Brother Charlie"

For Peete's Sake - Rodney Peete discusses how he came to accept his son's Autism diagnosis

RJ is asked an important question about what he would do if the police pull him over when he's driving

© 2018 Nyesha Pagnou MPH


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